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Former SNP councillor accused of electoral fraud

Alex MacLeod has not yet entered a plea

Alex MacLeod has not yet entered a plea

The youngest Highland councillor ever to be elected is accused of forming a fraudulent scheme in a bid to win victory – including allegedly fiddling expenses.

Alexander Lindsay Murray-MacLeod, 21, had the criminal case against him called for the first time at Inverness Sheriff Court today.

The former councillor, who resigned his Landward Caithness seat last month, was not present, but solicitor Duncan Henderson sought a continuation without plea for four weeks.

Sheriff Margaret Neilson set a new date of 7 November.

MacLeod is accused of forming a fraudulent scheme to be elected as a councillor for Landward Caithness in the Highland Council election last year, and the charge sets out a series of allegations in his pursuance of the scheme, between 15 March and 8 June last year.

It states he allegedly incurred election expenses in excess of the permitted amount - £1226.04 – and he knowingly declared false election expenses to officials of the Highland Council.

He is further alleged to have altered invoices from Caithness Print Solutions and the John O’ Groat Journal so that they failed to show the true extent of the cost of the services provided by them.

MacLeod, it is alleged, also knowingly declared a false home residence in his nomination paper.

The charge alleges: “All of this you did in the pursuance of election as a councillor for Landward Caithness, and did thereby induce officials of Highland Council to submit your application as an electoral candidate for Highland Council election, whereby you were subsequently elected as a councillor for Landward Caithness in a Highland Council election by fraud.”

 

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